Monday, April 24, 2006

Blogging and Journalism

The Philadelphia Inquirer published two outstanding pieces Sunday by Hugh Hewitt and Jonathan Last on blogging and journalism. They should be read by anyone interested in the possibilities and limitations of blogging, as well as of old media.

While Hewitt opines that the growth of blogging signals the end of print journalism, Last counters that most bloggers are involved in opinion journalism and give short shrift to fact gathering and reporting. While Last makes an important point, it is interesting that I read it on the same day that I noted Bill Hobbs praising Blake Wiley for a bit of reporting he did at his blog, and on the same day that Instapundit noted an interesting project by Michael Totten.

Bloggers are able to provide good opinion journalism because they frequently possess expertise and reasoning skills sometimes lacking among professional journalists. On the other hand, because at this point in time most bloggers have other employment, they frequently lack the ability to go out away from their keyboards and cover stories.

That may change over time. However, at this point it seems to me that new media will supplement and enhance, not replace, old media. There can be tremendous synergy for a media organization that figures out how to integrate its newsgathering and blogging components. I have hope that media organizations, including local media organizations, will figure out how to make that happen.

Hat Tip: Power Line

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